10 Most Popular MMORPGs in 2024 – The Gamer’s Odyssey

Since the MMORPG genre is my favorite, I’ve spent countless hours exploring various virtual worlds, battling formidable foes, and forging alliances with fellow adventurers. While the titles may have the same foundation, the stories surrounding them have expanded massively from the original idea.

Naturally, some are better than others, and one of the best indicators is the number of players that play them every day. That is why I would like to guide you through the most popular MMORPGs you can partake in today.

Without further ado, let us begin.

10. EVE Online

MMORPG trends 2024

EVE Online is a space-based, persistent world MMORPG known for its complex gameplay, deep economic system, and expansive player-driven universe. Since its launch in 2003, EVE has become synonymous with epic space battles involving thousands of players, intricate political machinations, and a vast economy driven by player actions.

The game’s sandbox nature allows players to explore, fight, trade, and form alliances with other players to control vast swathes of the game’s universe, making it one of the most dynamic and player-driven MMORPGs available.

  • Daily Active Players: 230,000
  • Release Date: 2003
  • Key Features:
    • Vast, player-driven universe with thousands of star systems.
    • Complex economic and political systems driven by player actions.
    • Epic space battles with hundreds to thousands of players.
    • Deep customization of ships and playstyles.

9. Elite Dangerous

Popular online games list

Elite Dangerous offers a vast, open-world space simulation experience, allowing players to explore the Milky Way galaxy in a 1:1 scale representation. Since its release in 2014, the game has captivated players with its depth of exploration, trading, combat, and role-playing elements.

Players can choose their path, from a law-abiding trader or explorer to a feared pirate. The game’s realistic physics, detailed ship customization, and dynamic economy have made it a standout title for fans of space simulation games.

  • Daily Active Players: 275,000
  • Release Date: 2014
  • Key Features:
    • Massive, open-world galaxy to explore.
    • Realistic space flight simulation with detailed ship customization.
    • Player-driven economy and dynamic faction system.
    • Solo or cooperative gameplay, with PvP options.

8. Black Desert Online

Black Desert Online (BDO) is known for its stunning graphics, detailed character customization, and action-packed combat system. Since its release in 2015, BDO has set itself apart with its sandbox gameplay, allowing players to engage in a variety of activities, from combat to crafting, fishing, trading, and more.

The game’s world is vast and fully explorable, offering breathtaking landscapes and a depth of gameplay that can cater to both casual and hardcore players. BDO’s real-time combat system requires skill and precision, making battles engaging and rewarding.

  • Daily Active Players: 325,000
  • Release Date: 2015
  • Key Features:
    • Highly detailed character customization.
    • Expansive sandbox world with a variety of activities.
    • Action-packed, skill-based combat system.
    • Dynamic weather system and day/night cycle affecting gameplay.

7. Guild Wars 2

MMORPG player favorites

Guild Wars 2 represents a significant evolution in the MMORPG genre, emphasizing dynamic events and player actions that have real consequences on the game world. Launched in 2012, the game broke away from traditional questing systems, offering instead a world that evolves based on player interaction.

With its innovative World vs. World (WvW) PvP system, players can engage in massive battles that influence the control of territories. Guild Wars 2 is renowned for its beautiful art style, engaging combat system, and storyline that reacts to player choices, making it a standout title in the genre.

  • Daily Active Players: 350,000
  • Release Date: 2012
  • Key Features:
    • Dynamic event system that shapes the game world.
    • Action-oriented combat that emphasizes player skill.
    • Beautifully crafted world and art design.
    • Strong emphasis on player choice and story progression.

6. The Elder Scrolls Online

Gaming community preferences

The Elder Scrolls Online (ESO) transports players to the rich universe of Tamriel, a world familiar to fans of the Elder Scrolls franchise. Since its launch in 2014, ESO has expanded significantly, offering players the freedom to explore iconic locations from the series, engage in a wide array of quests, and partake in massive PvP battles in Cyrodiil.

The game stands out for its storytelling, with each quest and expansion adding depth to the lore of the Elder Scrolls universe. ESO’s commitment to a living, breathing world, alongside regular content updates and expansions, has cultivated a dedicated player base, making it one of the most immersive MMORPGs on the market.

  • Daily Active Players: 375,000
  • Release Date: 2014
  • Key Features:
    • Expansive, open-world exploration across familiar and new locations in Tamriel.
    • Rich storytelling and quest design.
    • An active combat system that requires skill and strategy.
    • Large-scale PvP battles and cooperative PvE content.

5. World of Warcraft Classic

Top MMORPG rankings

World of Warcraft Classic is a faithful recreation of the original WoW experience as it was in 2004, launched in response to player demand for a return to the game’s roots. It strips away years of updates and expansions to offer a nostalgic experience for veterans and a new challenge for newcomers.

Classic focuses on the original game’s challenging gameplay, where community and teamwork are crucial to overcoming the game’s toughest obstacles. The success of WoW Classic has proven the lasting appeal of the original game’s design and the strong sense of nostalgia among its player base.

  • Daily Active Players: 500,000
  • Release Date: 2019 (as WoW Classic)
  • Key Features:
    • An authentic recreation of the original WoW experience.
    • Challenging gameplay that emphasizes community and teamwork.
    • Nostalgic return to the game’s original mechanics and content.
    • Strong sense of community and player cooperation.

4. RuneScape

Online multiplayer games 2024

RuneScape, developed by Jagex, is one of the longest-running MMORPGs, having evolved significantly since its release in 2001. Known for its accessibility and depth, RuneScape offers a blend of traditional fantasy MMORPG elements with the flexibility of a sandbox game.

Players can partake in quests, engage in skill training, participate in various combat activities, and much more, all within the expansive world of Gielinor. The game’s continuous updates and player-driven content have kept the community active and engaged, making it a dynamic and ever-changing world.

  • Daily Active Players: 525,000
  • Release Date: 2001
  • Key Features:
    • Wide range of skills to train, from combat to crafting.
    • Open-world sandbox gameplay.
    • Strong community with player-driven events and content.
    • Cross-platform play between PC and mobile devices.

3. World of Warcraft

Best MMORPGs of the year

World of Warcraft (WoW) has been a cornerstone of the MMORPG genre since its release in 2004, offering players an expansive universe filled with rich lore, diverse races, and countless quests. As the flagship title of Blizzard Entertainment, WoW set the standard for what an MMORPG could be, with a deep narrative, engaging world, and a strong sense of community.

The game’s world, Azeroth, is a place of endless adventure, where players can engage in epic quests, participate in massive raids, and compete in high-stakes PvP battles. Despite the emergence of numerous competitors, WoW has maintained a loyal player base, thanks to its continuous updates, expansions, and the ability to evolve with its audience.

  • Daily Active Players: 1.2 million
  • Release Date: 2004
  • Key Features:
    • Expansive, ever-evolving world and lore.
    • Deep PvE and PvP content.
    • Strong community and social features.
    • Regular expansions and updates that add new content and features.

2. Old School RuneScape

Old School RuneScape (OSRS) stands as one of the enduring appeals of classic MMORPG gameplay, combined with the nostalgia of the early 2000s gaming era. Launched in 2013 as a version of RuneScape as it was in 2007, OSRS offers a sandbox experience where players set their own goals and challenges.

From battling fearsome dragons to mastering the art of crafting, the game provides an open world filled with endless possibilities. Its simple yet engaging mechanics, alongside a massive world full of adventure, have garnered a dedicated and active player base.

The game thrives on its community-driven updates, ensuring that the content remains fresh and in line with player expectations.

  • Daily Active Players: 1.4 million
  • Release Date: 2013 (as Old School RuneScape)
  • Key Features:
    • Vast open-world sandbox gameplay.
    • Player-driven content and updates.
    • Strong PvP and PvE content.
    • Nostalgic graphics and gameplay with modern updates.

1. Final Fantasy XIV

Gaming industry updates

Final Fantasy XIV, a title that succeeded in surviving after the initial troubled launch in 2010, has transformed into one of the most beloved MMORPGs by 2024. Its rebirth under the title “A Realm Reborn” in 2013 marked the beginning of an unprecedented success story, captivating millions with its narrative, expansive world, and deep character customization.

The game’s ability to weave an engaging story with the social and cooperative aspects of MMORPG gameplay has set a new standard for the genre. Players start their path at the land of Eorzea, an interesting realm filled with ancient lore and a constant threat from both internal and external forces.

The community aspect is particularly strong, with a welcoming atmosphere that encourages veterans and newcomers alike to work together, explore together, and grow together.

  • Daily Active Players: 3 million
  • Release Date: Original in 2010, A Realm Reborn in 2013
  • Key Features:
    • An extensive class system allows for deep customization.
    • Engaging PvE content with challenging dungeons and raids.
    • A strong, welcoming community ideal for both solo and group play.
    • Regular updates and expansions that significantly extend the game’s life.


What is the most successful MMORPG?
The most successful MMORPG is World of Warcraft (WoW). Since its release in 2004, WoW has dominated the genre with millions of subscribers, a vast world of Azeroth to explore, and a deep, engaging lore. Its success is attributed to its accessible gameplay, regular updates, expansions, and a strong, dedicated community.
Is MMORPG a dying genre?
No, MMORPG is not a dying genre. While it has seen fluctuations in popularity, the genre continues to evolve with new titles and significant updates to existing games attracting a steady stream of players. Advances in technology and the rise of social gaming have also helped MMORPGs remain relevant.
Is PC gaming still popular?
Yes, PC gaming is still very popular. It remains a preferred platform for many gamers due to its high-performance capabilities, customization options, extensive game library, and the community and modding culture. The rise of esports and streaming has further solidified PC gaming’s popularity.
Why do most MMOs fail?
Most MMOs fail due to a combination of high development costs, stiff competition, and difficulty in maintaining a player base. Success in the MMORPG genre requires constant updates, engaging content, and a strong community. Games that fail to innovate or capture the players’ interest over time struggle to sustain themselves financially and retain players.

The Bottom Line

The genre continues to evolve and captivate with its unique blend of storytelling, community, and exploration. Each game, with its distinct world and mechanics, offers a sanctuary for players to escape the mundane and jump on epic quests alongside like-minded adventurers.

From the high seas of EVE Online to the mystical lands of Final Fantasy XIV, these games have provided not just entertainment, but a sense of belonging and purpose within their expansive universes. I’m filled with anticipation for what the future holds for the genre.